For some people, the clicking and clacking of keys is a reassuring and pleasant sound. For others, it is abrasive and irritating. The quiet keyboard is designed to work as silently as possible, eliminating keyboard noise to make a workspace quieter, and to ease the irritation of people who can't stand the sound of typing. Many electronics supply stores sell keyboards that are designed to be quiet, and it is also possible to order them through specialty companies.
The keys on a quiet keyboard are engineered in a way which is designed to make a minimum amount of noise when the keyboard is in use. When pressed, instead of clicking or clacking, the keys move silently or as quietly as possible to make contact with the circuitry of the keyboard. The result is a minimal volume level during typing, although typists who tend to pound on the keyboard can still produce some noise with a quiet keyboard.
Beyond resolving irritation with the sound of typing, there are some other uses for a quiet keyboard. People who use the phone at work may choose to use one so that the sound of typing does not interfere with phone calls. In crowded workplaces, these keyboards can help reduce the overall noise level, making the environment more comfortable for employees. A quiet keyboard may also be adopted as a courtesy to a roommate, so that late-night typing does not interfere with sleep or studying. It is also possible to find quiet mice to go with these keyboards.
Few keyboards are totally silent, and it is a good idea to test a quiet keyboard before purchase. Typists should also be aware that their typing habits will have an influence on the sound of the keyboard, which means that light-fingered typists are more likely to achieve silent typing, while heavy-handed individuals may still hear some clicking and clattering with the keyboard.
Consumer reviews are also a good resource when purchasing a quiet keyboard, as they can give an accurate idea of how the keyboard really performs. People may also want to consider whether or not they want a wireless keyboard, and if they want extra functionality such as programmable hot keys which can be used for keyboard shortcuts. All of these additional features will elevate the cost of a quiet keyboard slightly, but they may be worth it for a frequent typist, especially if the keyboard comes with a warranty so that it can be replaced if it fails.